History of Liquor: Distilled Spirits Timelines

The history of liquor is a fascinating one. Its origins are unclear. But most think people first distilled alcohol around the 13th century AD. And there’s no proof it occurred earlier.

history of liquor
Albertus Magnus – the first to describe how to distill alcohol

Wine can occur with no human help. And beer can brew with little human involvement. But distilling alcohol can’t. It requires advanced understanding. It also requires advanced technology. Therefore, people ‘developed’ distillation. They didn’t ‘discovered’ it.


‘Liquor’ has different meanings. And its meaning has changed over time. At one time, it meant any alcohol beverage. However, now it generally refers to distilled spirits. These include whiskey, rum, vodka, gin, etc.

The History of Liquor